Republican voter thanks Russia for 'interfering in our election'

Trump supporter tells call-in show she is confident Kremlin swung 2016 presidential vote, but has no complaints

Chris Baynes
Tuesday 17 July 2018 09:58 BST
Republican voter thanks Russia for interering with the US election

Donald Trump may have accepted Vladimir Putin’s denial that Russia meddled in the US election, but not all of his supporters are so convinced.

However, one Republican voter who rang American TV network C-Span had no complaints about Moscow allegedly undermining her country’s democratic process.

“I’ll try not to sound too awful, but I want to thank the Russians for interfering with our election to stop Hillary Clinton from becoming president,” said the caller, introduced as Marylou from Newington, Connecticut.

Hours earlier, Mr Trump had said he saw “no reason” to doubt his Russian counterpart’s insistence that the Kremlin had not sought to influence to 2016 US presidential election.

"I have great confidence in my intelligence people, but I will tell you that President Putin was extremely strong and powerful in his denial today." he added.

The US leader’s comments, at a joint press conference with Mr Putin in Helsinki, were condemned in Washington as “treasonous” and “one of the most disgraceful performances by an American president in memory”.

Marylou from Newington, however, had no such misgivings.

Asked by Washington Journal host John McArdle if she believed Moscow had won Mr Trump the election, she replied: “Yes, because the Russians interfered.”

Speaking live on air during the long-running political call-in programme, she thanked the Russians for helping the Republican beat Ms Clinton, who she said had “illusions of grandeur and so has her husband”.

She referred to Mr Clinton as an “accused rapist” and blamed his wife, who “never did anything to stop him from doing that”.

“What would we do with Hilary in the White House,” the caller ranted. "That woman, she doesn’t know what she was doing.”

The US president cannot rely on such unquestioning support from all Republicans in the wake of his press conference with Mr Putin.

Senator John McCain called it “one of the most disgraceful performances by an American president in memory, while the top Republican in Congress, House speaker Paul Ryan, said Mr Trump must see that "Russia is not our ally".

Mr Trump's director of national intelligence, Dan Coats, reiterated that investigators were clear about their conclusions over Moscow’s "ongoing, pervasive attempts" to subvert US democracy.

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